“She was beautiful, but not like those girls in the magazines. She was beautiful for the way she thought. She was beautiful for the sparkle in her eyes when she talked about something she loved. She was beautiful for her ability to make other people smile even if she was sad. No, she wasn’t beautiful […]
I love to give presents. But, with me being home with the kids – Our budget is really tight. In the last eight years since being a Stay-at-Home Mom, I have needed to find some creative ways to give gifts!
That is one reason I am extremely busy this time of year. I have often felt – and people have actually commented to me – that it must be sooo nice to be able to be home with the kids. It is, yes. But… it has also been very tough financially. It has been hard, but we have finally gotten to a position where we are able to give a little more. I have had to tell myself ‘No’ many times over Christmas the last few years, in order to make Christmas better for other people – friends and family, and my children.
It was soo hard to sit back and want to be able to give to people but have nothing to give – it takes self control and discipline to make sure the bills are paid before you start buying gifts for people. And so, Come Christmas – I am living off 3 hours of sleep a night finishing up Handmade Christmas gifts – between sewing pajama’s, pillows, scarves, games, and making other handmade gifts, I have made over 50 handmade gifts. So…if your trying to reach me this time of year – Good Luck! because between sewing, baking, Christmas cards ( I had over 60 to do this year!) and just regular life – making breakfast, lunch and supper, laundry, taking care of the kids, I barely have time to think, but I love feeling like this – I have learned the true meaning of the saying “When you do what you love, it isn’t work”
‘Where is the newborn king? We saw his star as it rose, and we have come to worship him.’
The wise men said they saw Jesus’ star. Balaam referred to a coming ‘star…from Jacob’ (Numbers 24:17). Some say this star may have been a conjunction of Jupiter, Saturn and Mars in 6 BC, and others have other explanations. But couldn’t God, who created the heavens, have created a special star to signal the arrival of his Son? Whatever the nature of the star, these wise men travelled thousands of miles searching for a king – and they found him! study note: NLT STUDY BIBLE – Matt. 2:2
Photo courtesy of: TIME.com ~ Hiker at Vernal Falls in Yosemite National Park, 1962.
The lives of the first Christian missionaries can be described with many words, but boring is not one of them. There were days of great excitement as men and women who had never heard of Jesus responded to the gospel. There were dangerous journey’s over land and sea. Health risks, sickness and hunger were part of the daily routine. And there was open and hostile resistance to Christianity in many cities. Silas was one of the first missionaries, and he found out that serving Jesus Christ was anything but boring.
Silas’s name appears in Acts at the end of the first church council on the Jewish/Gentile problem. The majority of early Christians were Jews who realized that Jesus was the fulfillment of Gods Old Testament promises to his people; however, the universal application of those promises had been overlooked. Thus, many felt that becoming Jewish was a prerequisite to becoming a Christian. The idea that God could accept a Gentile pagan was too incredible. But Gentiles began to accept Christ as Saviour, and the transformation of their lives and the presence of Gods Spirit confirmed their conversions. Some Jews were still reluctant, however, and insisted these new Christians take on various Jewish customs. The issue came to a boiling point at the Jerusalem council but was peacefully resolved. Silas was one of the representatives from Jerusalem sent with Paul and Barnabas back to Antioch with an official letter of welcome and acceptance to the Gentile Christians. Having fulfilled this mission, Silas returned to Jerusalem. Within a short time, however, he was back in Antioch at Paul’s request to join him on his second missionary journey.
Paul, Silas and Timothy began a far-ranging ministry that included some exciting adventures. Paul and Silas spent the night singing in a Philippian jail after being severely beaten. An earthquake, the loosening of their chains, and the resulting panic led to the conversion of their jailor and his family. Later, they narrowly missed another beating in Thessalonica, prevented by an evening escape. In Berea there was more trouble, but Silas and Timothy stayed to teach the young believers, while Paul traveled on to Athens. The team was finally re-united in Corinth. In each place they visited, they left behind a small group of Christians.
Silas leaves the story as suddenly as he entered it. Peter mentions him as the co-author of 1 Peter, but we do not know when he joined Peter. He was an effective believer before leaving Jerusalem, and he doubtless continued to minister after his work with Paul was completed. He took advantage of opportunities to serve God and Christ and was not discouraged by the setbacks and opposition he met along the way. Silas, though not the most famous of the early missionaries, was certainly a hero worth imitating.
STRENGTHS AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS: A leader in the Jerusalem Church, Represented the Church in carrying the ‘acceptance letter’ prepared by the Jerusalem Council to the Gentile believers in Antioch, Was closely associated with Paul from the second missionary journey on, Sang songs of praise to God while in jail with Paul in Philippi, worked as a writing secretary for Paul and Peter.
LESSONS FROM HIS LIFE: Partnership is a significant part of effective ministry, God never guarantees that his servants will not suffer, Obedience to God will often mean giving up what makes us feel secure.
VITAL STATISTICS: WHERE: Roman citizen living in Jerusalem, OCCUPATION: One of the first career missionaries, CONTEMPORARIES: Paul, Timothy, Peter, Mark, Barnabas.
KEY VERSES: ‘So we decided, having come to complete agreement, to send you official representatives, along with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, who have risked their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. We are sending Judas(not Judas Iscariot) and Silas to confirm what we have decided concerning your question’ ACTS 15:25-27
Silas’s story is told in Acts 15:22-19:10. He is also mentioned in 2 Corinthians 1:19; 1 Thessalonians 1:1-2; 2 Thessalonians 1:1; 1 Peter 5:12.
ACKNOWLEDGMENT: NLT STUDY BIBLE ~ STUDY NOTES ~ Silas. pg. 1859
People are so very picky. When it comes to a woman’s body – one person likes this, one person likes that. If you have ever hung around with guys for any matter of time, and listen to how they speak about women – women’s bodies, women’s looks, You would get a good picture of just how picky we are as a society. But where does that leave us ladies? Constantly feeling as though- if we don’t look like this, or don’t look like that… maybe, just maybe, we’re not quite good enough.
And that’s not okay. Where have we went wrong as a society, that women feel pressured to look a certain way – And if they don’t look a certain way – they’re just not good enough.
It’s sad, heartbreaking to know, that so many women struggle with accepting themselves, as the beautiful creatures they are.
People are breathtaking. People are interesting creatures, wonderfully and beautifully made – If we could see each person as their own unique masterpiece, The world would be full of so much art. People are truly beautiful creatures. The human body is a like piece of art designed to be admired and loved, not torn apart and broken down. Each piece of art, each masterpiece -truly a magnificent work of art – no matter the size, shape or colour. People are beautiful.
Now, to raise my daughter, in a society that teaches – you have to ‘look a certain way’ to be beautiful, The one thing I want her to know is that – She was beautifully, and wonderfully made, and if she can see people as the masterpieces they really are…..That is what true beauty is.